Berlin The start of vaccinations against the corona virus is imminent in Berlin. The EU Commission granted the preparation of the Mainz company Biontech and its US partner Pfizer conditional marketing authorization on Monday. The European Medicines Agency, EMA, had previously recommended this on the same day. This clears the way for mass vaccinations to protect against infection with the virus, including in the capital, where more than 1000 people have already died in connection with the coronavirus. Preparations for the start of vaccination have been going on for a long time.
When do vaccinations start in Berlin?
It starts nationwide on Sunday (December 27th), also in Berlin. Health Senator Dilek Kalayci has announced that residents of nursing homes will be the first to be vaccinated. They are considered a particularly vulnerable group.
Who will be vaccinated at the beginning?
Even in the initial phase, the employees of the nursing homes should be vaccinated as early as possible, as well as older people over 80 years of age who do not live in nursing homes. The latter receive a written invitation to one of the vaccination centers in Berlin and can then make an appointment. Two vaccinations are planned per person, each with an interval of several weeks.
Where are the nursing home residents vaccinated?
The residents of the nursing homes will be joined by 60 mobile vaccination teams that will be deployed throughout the city from Sunday. The operations center is located at the former Tegel Airport. Each team can vaccinate around 50 people a day. The Bundeswehr supports the mobile teams and provides, for example, the drivers for the minibuses that transport the teams through Berlin.
What about the vaccinations for other groups of the population?
For the mass vaccinations, Berlin has also set up six vaccination centers, which are to be used increasingly in the new year for vaccinations for nursing staff and those over 80 years of age. According to the health administration, they are all ready to go. The largest of these is the arena in Treptow with 80 vaccination booths. The first thing to do is to start vaccinations outside of the nursing homes. There are further vaccination centers in a hall on the exhibition grounds, in Hangar 4 at the former Tempelhof Airport, in the Velodrom in Pankow, in the Erika-Heß-Eisstadion in Wedding and in Terminal C at the former Tegel Airport. In a later phase, Berlin’s resident doctors are to take over the vaccinations. When that will be has not yet been determined.
Does vaccination cost anything?
Whoever gets vaccinated doesn’t have to pay anything. The federal government bears the cost of the vaccines.
How much vaccine is initially available in Berlin?
The health administration has announced that Berlin will initially receive 9,750 vaccine doses from Biontech on Saturday. On Monday, another 19,500 followed, two days later another 29,500. A total of almost 59,000 vaccine doses are planned for Berlin in December. From the beginning of 2021, weekly deliveries of 29,750 vaccine doses are expected. Unfortunately, the vaccine is only coming gradually, said Kalayci. That makes medium-term planning difficult.
Are there enough staff for vaccination?
According to the Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (KV) Berlin, there are enough doctors available for the vaccinations. KV announced that all services in the mobile vaccination teams, which initially drive to the nursing homes and in the vaccination centers, are occupied up to and including January 12th. From December 27th to 30th, 90 doctors will be on duty every day in the mobile vaccination teams and in the vaccination center in the arena in Treptow. As of January 4th, 180 doctors will be available for the vaccination centers and 29 doctors for the mobile teams every day.
How fast is the vaccination going?
The health senator assumes that the vaccinations for the residents in the nursing homes will last until the beginning of February, those of the nursing staff until mid-February. At the beginning of January, invitations should be sent to those over 80 who do not live in nursing homes, Kalayci said on RBB Inforadio. “We hope that everything works well and smoothly, but ask for your understanding, as we have never done anything like this, that it might take a while at one point or another.”